Temperate seaweed species on the retreat (fiction)
Written by Rob Payne Friday, 18 November 2011 12:00
UP to 25 per cent of temperate seaweed species in Australia could be headed for extinction as global warming heats up our oceans, a new study published in journal Current Biology suggests.
Led by UWA Oceans Institute research Assistant Professor Thomas Wernberg, the findings of ‘Seaweed Communities in Retreat from Ocean Warming’ (Wernberg et al), draw from a database of over 20,000 records of macroalgae collected in Australia since the 1940s.
These records show changes in community composition and geographical distribution and suggest a pattern of migration that puts species at risk in both the Indian and Pacific Oceans.
“Temperate seaweed communities have changed over the past 50 years to become increasingly subtropical,” Prof Wernberg says.
“We estimated that projected ocean warming could lead to several hundred species retracting south and beyond the edge of the Australian continent, where they will have no suitable habitat and may therefore go extinct.”
One seaweed at risk of disappearing from WA waters is Scytothalia doryocarpa—a relatively large and abundant species showing southward migration…
One small problem…it’s fiction: I guess that’s what happens when you believe models and not observations…
Bob Tisdale: The obvious intent of my recent post “17-Year And 30-Year Trends In Sea Surface Temperature Anomalies: The Differences Between Observed And IPCC AR4 Climate Models” was to illustrate the divergence between the IPCC AR4 projected Sea Surface Temperature trends and the trends of the observations as presented by the Hadley Centre’s HADISST Sea Surface Temperature dataset.
(1) Global Sea Surface Temperature Anomalies
Monthly Change = -0.018 deg C
Otherwise these seaweeds would already be extinct after the medieval warming period…